What is the future of Gareth Southgate amid England’s poor run of games? Last year England were the heavy favorites to win the World Cup. Now, they have been on terrible form of late with just less than two months to the World Cup.
They have failed to win their last five international matches, with all matches during Nations League play. Though being put in the group of death in the Nations League, they have lost twice to Hungary. They also recently picked up a loss to Italy, who are missing the World Cup again.
England vs Italy
It was a rematch of the Euro 2020 Cup final, and much pressure was on England to come out with a win to advance in their group. Southgate played a 3-4-3 formation with Harry Maguire and Eric Dier headlining in the back. Fans criticized him for having Maguire in the starting lineup for England amid recent poor form with Manchester United.
England had a very poor game with issues connecting plays and creating chances in front of the net. Italy finally broke though when Giancomo Raspadori scored in the 68th minute of the game. England failed to score on their 14 shots (four on target) and lost to Italy again 1-0. This loss regulated them out of the Nations League A and into the second tier of the Nations League.
The defensive performance of Maguire, Dier, and Walker was very poor, each player failing to score over a 7 in their rating of the game. However, the midfield trio of Reece James, Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice were great in creating plays. Both Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane did not have their best performance but will continue to start in future games. Southgate also subbed on Jack Grealish for Saka in the midfield, even though he usually plays as a winger. He also subbed off Walker for Luke Shaw, choosing him over Trent Alexander-Arnold in the back. This is another reason why the fans are questioning the future of Gareth Southgate over these tactic decisions for England.
England vs Germany
Southgate changed up the formation, playing in a 3-4-2-1 instead. He started John Stone over Walker in the back and had Luke Shaw in the midfield over Saka. He also still chose to leave Maguire in the back and left off Trent Alexander-Arnold off the team sheet. Many fans were angry in this decision, considering his performance last match.
His poor form continued after giving up a careless foul in the box that resulted in a penalty scored by Ilkay Gundogan in the 53rd minute. Shortly after Chelsea’s Kai Havertz scored in the 67th minute, putting England down 2-0 with 20 minutes left in the game. England fought all the way back with a goal from Luke Shaw in the 71st and Mason Mount in the 75thminute.
England eventually took the lead in the 83rd minute with Harry Kane scoring a penalty kick after Jude Bellingham drew a penalty after a foul from Nico Schlotterbeck. It was looking all good for England, until Havertz again scored in the 87thminute of the game to end the game 3-3. England had far more shots and shots on target in the game but gave up too much possession and mistakes in the back that allowed Germany the opportunities to score.
Shaw had a better performance against Germany and may be an option for starting left midfield, however it is set that Southgate will go with Rice, Bellingham and James in the midfield. Maguire continues to have poor games as fans are urging Southgate to bench him for future games with England. Playing three men in the back may not be working out for England after conceding four goals in two games.
What is the future of Gareth Southgate?
Southgate’s job with England is at jeopardy with their poor run of games leading up to the World Cup. It seems like his choice of tactics and players are not working out for the team that could lead to major issues come November. The best option for head coach for England now would be Chelsea’s former coach Thomas Tuchel.
With Tuchel out of a job, he would be great pick for England with his winning mentality. He has helped bring Chelsea to two finals and a Champions League title in his short run with the club. However, England refuse to hire a German coach for the England squad due to their long history with them. In any case,England must find a way to get back their form if they want t